Challenges to the implementation of lean practices in higher education: Is the culture in higher education conducive to adoption of lean principles and philosophy?
Kluse, C., Shannon, C.J. (2022). Challenges to the implementation of lean practices in higher education: Is the culture in higher education conducive to adoption of lean principles and philosophy? Journal of Management & Engineering Integration, 15(2), 80-91.
Lean in higher education, often abbreviated as LHE, has grown in interest over the past 20 years. The application of lean principles has been observed in higher education institutions throughout the world. Many researchers have investigated both the success and the failure of lean in higher education. Although lean originated in the automotive industry, and both the automotive industry and higher education report success and failure, there is no comparison of the factors between these groups. Culture is cited quite frequently in the literature as a barrier to success. Thus, there is a need for investigation into the cultural differences between higher education and the automotive industry as they relate to lean. This paper uses Schein's three elements of culture to evaluate the differences in culture between higher education and the automotive industry. It concludes with recommendations on how to best deploy the practices of lean in higher education given the cultural differences and challenges between the two sectors.